Strategies

Policies and programs that work

151 Strategies
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Adult vocational training

Support acquisition of job-specific skills through education, certification programs, or on-the-job training, often with personal development resources and other supports
Scientifically Supported
  • Employment

Affordable housing tax increment financing (TIF)

Create designated tax districts that generate revenue to invest in affordable housing initiatives, blight remediation, and economic development efforts
Expert Opinion
  • Housing and Transit

Alcohol advertising restrictions

Restrict the content and placement of alcohol advertisements on broadcasts, outdoor displays, internet marketing, etc. via state laws, local ordinances, industry self-regulation, or a combination of efforts
Some Evidence
  • Alcohol and Drug Use

Alternative fuels initiatives

Support alternative fuel and vehicle use via financial incentives (e.g., tax benefits, rebates, etc.), mandates (e.g., consumption targets or renewable fuel standards), research and development investments, etc.
Expert Opinion
  • Air and Water Quality

Ban the Box

Prohibit criminal history questions on job applications and postpone background checks
Mixed Evidence
  • Employment

Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS)

Match disadvantaged or at-risk youth with volunteer mentors in school or community settings
Some Evidence
  • Community Safety
  • Education

Birthing Project SisterFriends

Provide one-on-one advice, education, and emotional and social support to women of color, by volunteer women of color, during pregnancy and for one year after birth
Insufficient Evidence
  • Family and Social Support

Breastfeeding promotion programs

Provide education, information, counseling, and support for breastfeeding to women throughout pre- and post-natal care
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Bridge programs for hard-to-employ adults

Provide basic skills (e.g., reading, math, writing, English language, or soft skills) and industry-specific training with other supports; also called occupationally contextualized basic education programs
Expert Opinion
  • Education
  • Employment

Car seat incentive & education programs

Educate parents and caregivers about proper use of car seats and reward parents and/or children for correct use
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Career pathways programs

Provide occupation-specific training for low-skilled individuals in high-growth industries, with education and supports, usually with stackable credentials and work experience opportunities
Expert Opinion
  • Employment

Carpool & rideshare programs

Help commuters share transportation through informal arrangements between individuals, formally arranged dynamic ridesharing programs, or other ride-matching services
Expert Opinion
  • Air and Water Quality
  • Housing and Transit

Case-managed care for community-dwelling frail elders

Use a case management model for frail elderly patients living independently, coordinating aspects of long-term care (LTC) such as status assessment, monitoring, advocacy, care planning, etc.
Scientifically Supported
  • Quality of Care

Child bicycle helmet promotion programs

Promote child bicycle helmet use via bicycle safety education, media campaigns, or provision of free or subsidized helmets
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Child development accounts

Establish dedicated child development accounts (CDAs) to build assets over time with contributions from family, friends, and sometimes, supporting organizations; also called children’s savings accounts (CSAs)
Expert Opinion
  • Income
  • Education

Community arts programs

Support locally-based visual, media, and performing arts initiatives for children and adults; also called participatory arts programs
Expert Opinion
  • Family and Social Support

Community fitness programs

Offer exercise classes (e.g., yoga, Tai Chi, cycling, etc.) and fitness program support in community centers, senior centers, fitness, and community wellness centers
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Community gardens

Establish and support land that is gardened or cultivated by community members via community land trusts, gardening education, zoning regulation changes, or service provision (e.g., water or waste disposal)
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Community kitchens for food processing

Establish shared kitchen spaces that support licensed, commercial food processing and connect specialty food processors, farmers, and others who produce value-added goods
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community kitchens for nutrition education

Use existing kitchen spaces for community members to share knowledge, resources, and labor to prepare, cook, and consume food, often with nutrition education provided for participants experiencing food insecurity
Insufficient Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Community policing

Implement a policing philosophy based on community partnership, organizational transformation, and problem solving techniques to proactively address public safety issues: also called community-oriented policing
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Community schools

Combine academic, mental and physical health, and social service resources in schools for students and families via partnerships with community organizations; also called community learning centers
Some Evidence
  • Education

Community supported agriculture (CSA)

Establish partnerships between farmers and consumers in which consumers purchase a share of a farm’s products in advance
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community weight loss challenges

Support temporary programs that work to energize participants to lose weight via prizes, often combined with education, weight status and food intake tracking, regular check-ins, and group support
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community-based social support for physical activity

Build, strengthen, and maintain social networks that provide supportive relationships for behavior change through walking groups or other community-based interventions
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Community-wide physical activity campaigns

Engage a variety of partners in a highly visible, multi-component effort to increase physical activity, often with efforts to address cardiovascular disease risk factors
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Competitive pricing for healthy foods

Assign higher costs to non-nutritious foods than nutritious foods via incentives, subsidies, or price discounts for healthy foods and beverages or disincentives or price increases for unhealthy choices
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Condom availability programs

Provide condoms free of charge or at a reduced cost in community and school-based settings
Scientifically Supported
  • Sexual Activity

Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)

Support the federal-state partnership that pays participating land owners an annual rental rate for removing environmentally sensitive land from production and introducing conservation practices on the land
Some Evidence
  • Air and Water Quality

Conservation tillage practices

Encourage methods of soil cultivation that keep at least one-third of cultivated soil covered with the previous year’s crop residue (e.g., mulch till, ridge till, strip till, or no-till)
Scientifically Supported
  • Air and Water Quality

Consumer-directed health plans

Establish high deductible health plans paired with pre-tax medical expense accounts such as Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) or Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and information tools
Mixed Evidence
  • Quality of Care

Cross-age youth peer mentoring

Establish an ongoing relationship between an older youth or young adult and a younger child or adolescent, usually an elementary or middle school student
Some Evidence
  • Family and Social Support

Culturally adapted health care

Tailor health care to patients’ norms, beliefs, and values, as well as their language and literacy skills
Scientifically Supported
  • Quality of Care

Debt advice for tenants with unpaid rent

Offer debt advice from trained providers to tenants with unpaid, overdue rent to help repay debt and increase financial literacy
Some Evidence
  • Income
  • Housing and Transit

Designated driver promotion programs

Encourage use of designated drivers via population-based mass media campaigns, incentive programs based in drinking establishments, and other efforts
Insufficient Evidence
  • Alcohol and Drug Use

Dropout prevention programs for teen mothers

Provide teen mothers with services such as remedial education, vocational training, case management, health care, child care, and transportation assistance to support high school completion
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Early Head Start (EHS)

Provide child care, parent education, physical health and mental health services, and other family supports to pregnant women and parents with low incomes and children aged 0 to 3
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Electronic Benefit Transfer payment at farmers markets

Enable farmers markets to accept EBT, the electronic payment system of debit cards used to issue and redeem Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)

Provide confidential worksite-based counseling and referrals to employees to address personal and workplace challenges
Some Evidence
  • Employment
  • Family and Social Support

Exercise prescriptions

Provide patients with prescriptions for exercise plans, often accompanied by progress checks at office visits, counseling, activity logs, and exercise testing
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Family-based physical activity interventions

Increase family members’ support for physical activity, often via educational sessions on health, goal-setting, problem-solving, or family behavioral management
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Farm to school programs

Incorporate locally grown foods into school meals and snacks, often with visits from food producers, cooking classes, nutrition and waste reduction efforts, and school gardens
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Farmers markets

Support multiple vendor markets where producers sell goods such as fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, dairy items, and prepared foods directly to consumers
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Financial education for adults

Provide one-on-one or group adult education programs that cover topics such as basic budgeting, bank use, credit management, bankruptcy, credit building and counseling, homeownership, retirement, divorce, etc.
Insufficient Evidence
  • Income

Financial rewards for employee healthy behavior

Offer payments, vouchers, credits toward health insurance premiums, or other financial rewards to encourage employees to lose weight, eat more healthily, quit smoking, engage in physical activity, etc.
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise